Lunch at Disfrutar
Disfrutar is designed to represent “a day in Barcelona.” You enter a busy space filled with vibrant colors, strong lines and a variety of materials. Then you walk through a narrow corridor made of ceramic tiles, passing by the heart of the restaurant, the kitchen. The corridor opens up to a bright, airy dining room complete with skylights, and leads you to a serene patio oasis.
I could spend days and days just observing and shooting the different angles, colors and lighting.
It is very difficult to pull off molecular gastronomy without it seeming too forced or showy. Sometimes molecular food is presented as if they are performing a science experiment demo at your table, explaining how everything was created, and by then I am lost and just want to eat.
In a world where we know everything about every dish before we set foot inside, this is an example of how strongly I feel that mystery (and trusting the kitchen) still has to remain in the dining world. But it’s also important for the kitchen to have purpose in using certain techniques and not just presenting to follow a trend or for a short-lived reaction.
The Beet That Comes Out of Land – The bowl of “dirt” is shaken and the hidden Beet surfaces. It was light in weight and had the texture of a flaky styrofoam but with a beautiful rich beet flavor coming through as the beet crumbled then dissolved in your mouth.
Lychee and Roses with Gin – The petals are centered by a frozen lychee. You lift each petal to your mouth and suck in the water drops, which are tapioca gel bubbles made of gin. They pop then release the flavor in your mouth and you are left with this gentle infusion of both the flavor and aroma of a floral cocktail. It is a magnificent, delicate, sensual experience.
9/14 This is an example of a full course presentation at Disfrutar. Elements of surprise and whimsy are hidden in boxes or served on objects that aren't plates. Something may look a certain way, but the flavors are unexpected. A course could be a few bites or multiple dishes choreographed as if an act at the theater. _ I keep notes for different cities and try to learn enough to decide where to go, but not too much so I am able to experience the meal the way it was intended to be. _ Everything happens so fast at a meal like this. You want to savor each bite while trying to understand and process everything that is going on. You want to store the memory of the flavors and textures as well as the visual presentation. All your senses are kicking in and after a while you learn that balanced flavor with good ingredients and strong technique are essential for theatrics to work. When everything comes together, it's quite an incredible experience. _ The mushroom dumpling is revealed while the aroma fills your table, but first you eat the crispy batter filled with runny egg. You move to the egg shell which is filled with an intensely flavored gelatinous mushroom mixture. Lastly, the mushroom dumpling is dunked in mushroom vinaigrette. _ Crispy Egg Yolk with Mushrooms Gelatine and Mushroom “Dumplings” @disfrutarbcn | Barcelona | 08/18/16 #loustejskal_disfrutar #loustejskal_barcelona